Derry SDLP Councillor Brian Tierney has reiterated the SDLP’s call for a halt in the roll out until there is urgent reform of Universal Credit saying the delay annouced by the British Government in effect will inflict greater hardship and suffering on people.

He again made this call as the British Government confirmed the next stage of the universal credit rollout is to be scaled back.

The Ballyarnett councillor (pictured) said: “The SDLP has been consistently clear that scaling back Universal Credit is not good enough. Its roll out must be halted until there is urgent and radical reform, not least when it comes to the minimum five week wait for first payment and the two child rule.

“The delay in moving people onto Universal Credit is an admission by the Tory Government that this system is flawed and is causing hurt and hardship, but this delay does not protect people. In effect it means more people are likely to lose out and be worse off as they are left to move on to Universal Credit under managed migration or premature migration where they will automatically lose the premiums they are currently receiving and rely on to make ends meet.

“It is also interesting to hear parties like Sinn Féin who, along with the DUP and Alliance, voted to enable the introduction of Universal Credit in the north call for it to be scrapped. Placards and press releases won’t protect people from this cruel and flawed system. People need and deserve to have an Executive and Assembly that takes real and meaningful action to tackle the failings of this cruel system."

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